Amnesty: Syria's diplomats harass dissidents

Rights group accuses diplomats in foreign capitals of harassment and threats; Amnesty demands West take action against abuses.

By REUTERS
October 4, 2011 03:22
1 minute read.
Syrians protest President Bashar Assad.

anti assad 311. (photo credit: REUTERS/Francois Lenoir )

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later

LONDON - Syrian diplomats in foreign capitals are mounting campaigns of harassment and threats against expatriate dissidents protesting outside their embassies, Amnesty International said on Tuesday.

Syrian opposition supporters have mounted noisy protests outside many embassies in recent months as the government of Bashar Assad has tried to put down unrest with what observers say has been a bloody crackdown.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


RELATED:
Syria detains 3,000 in rebellious central town

Amnesty said embassy officials had filmed and threatened some of those involved in protests outside Syria, and that in some cases relatives in Syria had been deliberately targeted for harassment, detention, torture and outright disappearance.

"Expatriate Syrians have been trying, through peaceful protest, to highlight abuses that we consider amount to crimes against humanity - and that presents a threat to the Syrian regime," said Neil Sammonds, Amnesty International's Syria researcher.

"In response the regime appears to have waged a systematic - sometimes violent - campaign to intimidate Syrians overseas into silence. This is yet more evidence that the Syrian government will not tolerate legitimate dissent and is prepared to go to great lengths to muzzle those who challenge it publicly."

Syrian officials have generally denied reports of human rights abuses, with the Assad government saying it has no choice but to restore law and order and avert chaos.

The group said it had documented cases of more than 30 activists in eight countries - Canada, Chile, France, Germany, Spain, Sweden, Britain and the United States - who had faced some form of direct intimidation.

JPOST VIDEOS THAT MIGHT INTEREST YOU:


In many cases, those protesting outside Syrian embassies complained they had been initially filmed or photographed by officials and then received phone calls, e-mails and Facebook messages warning them to stop.

In some cases, those contacting them openly admitted they were embassy officials, demanding they stop any kind of political action and threatening a variety of consequences.

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

November 22, 2018
Edelstein and Iran's Zarif attend same Middle East conference

By ARIK BENDER/MAARIV